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COMMENTS

This week’s TL;DR is an epic topic: What is the standard for beauty in Korea and how does it differ from North America, and vice versa? Wow, that’s a doosie of a question…it feels like we should submit this blog for grading once we’re finished with it (if we stay up all night and hand it in on time). Well to begin with, we should mention that these beauty points are what we feel the Korean media emphasizes as beauty, and what our Korean friends might mention in passing conversation, but this does not represent every Korean. It feels like we shouldn’t even have to mention that point, but we’re trying to cut off the “I’M KOREAN AND YOU’RE WRONG” comments from happening. ^^ We can’t cover every point here so we’re going to go with our Top 3.

Pale Complexions vs Tanning

Jersey Shore Tanning

Umm, that's just gross.

It seems to us that Korea has finely tuned the idea of beauty into several traits which are currently trendy, but we have no idea if they were always trendy or if this is a recent thing. The most apparent one is lack of tanning. Anywhere you go in Korea you’ll see people walking around with beautiful parasols, ajumma visors or hats, arm covers, and just about every type of cream comes with a 15+ SPF built into it. The heated debate about why Korean men and woman want to have pale skin falls into two categories. Once being the historical idea: in a nutshell, tanned skin means you are a poor peasant working outdoors and pale skin represents luxury, wealth, and lack of wrinkles. The other argument being that Korean people are trying to look more and more Caucasian, which obviously gets a lot of angry comments from Koreans. We don’t know which side is more correct, but Martina is already Caucasian and she has always hidden from the sun under parasols (even when in Canada) to prevent her skin from instantly burning, so I guess that makes her…a vampire. This seems to really differ from other parts of the world, especially where having a golden tan = going on vacation. The idea of going to a tanning bed is just a horrifying idea to all our Korean friends; even on the beach you can rent pre-set up beach umbrellas to avoid the sun at all costs.

Mono eyelids vs Double eyelids

Gain Mono Eyelid

Gain Doesn't have Double Eyelids, and she's freaking beautiful

Ah, the eyelid. Something that we, as North Americans, have never seemed to notice until we came to Korea. Who knew that tiny piece of skin was SO important to looking beautiful? Having “double eyelids”, or a fold/crease above your eye is a concept majority of North Americans have just taken for granted. In fact, we don’t even have a concrete name for it, but in Korea, it’s 쌍꺼풀 (ssanggeopul). If you’re a celebrity, you probably had surgery done to get it, but there are still some people (like Gain and Rain) that haven’t had it done. If you can’t afford surgery, then you might just go for some Double Eyelid Tape instead. Of course, arguments rage about why this surgery is so popular in Korea, and while many people say it’s to achieve a more Western looking eye, others argue that it’s just for the sake of beauty. We think the real question to be asked here is why having big eyes or a double eyelid is considered to be beautiful? It’s not like Rain is suddenly not good looking because of his monolid, he just looks distinctly Asian and we don’t think that there is anything wrong with that.

The V-Line Face

V Line Face Drink

Putting two bottles by your face, or in your stomach, will not change your face.

The concept of the “v-line” jaw being a coveted beauty trait makes us…uncomfortable. From a North American perspective, you’re either born with a certain jaw shape or you’re not. You’re face is round, oval, heart, triangle, square, rectangular and so on. Really good hairdressers can tell what style will suit you based just on your face shape and you can look at many celebrities (who all have different types of face shapes) for inspiration. In Korea, not so much. We have never seen anybody praised for having a cute, round face or a striking heart shaped face. It’s literally the “v-line” jaw bone or it’s not reported. The reason why this makes us so uncomfortable is because there is plastic surgery readily available if you want to shave down your jaw bone. We see ads on the subway as if it’s totally an everyday event to change your entire jaw structure. The other reason reports on the epic v-line makes us uncomfortable is because majority of those photos taken by celebs are angled in a oh-so-clever fashion to create the illusion of a “v-line”, but in this illusion, tons of products are sold to help “trim” your jaw and face fat. Sorry Korea, we just don’t believe that a plastic face roller can change my face size. With that idea, the vast amount of time I spend sleeping on one side of my face should have horribly distorted my face by now.

In conclusion Professor Internet, it seems to us that growing up in a multi-cultural society (anywhere in the world) has a huge effect on what one thinks is beautiful. We feel like this is the most important thing to remember when comparing beautify standards of Korea to North America. As a Canadian from Toronto, it’s nearly impossible to pinpoint what an “ideal” Canadian looking woman would look like, since we grew up with so many different face shapes, skin tones, hair types, hair colours, body sizes, and eye colours.

ToFebruary
Gmarket
  1. Thanks for the great share. seems like you guys are having such a great time in South Korea ! Would love to visit country one day.

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  3. I know this video is older, but I have some information to add to the conversation. In America, where I live, we are taught that everyone is unique, but that everyone is STILL beautiful in their own way, no matter if you’re curvy or skinny, tall or short, dark skinned or light skinned! Everyone IS beautiful in their own way, and many Americans preach this belief. BUT, to be honest, not many people truly believe this statement. Someone might say that this is true, and then bash the new girl, saying she’s fat and therefore ugly. There definitely IS a standard of beauty in America. It’s NOT always the same for everyone, but for most people, there is a certain standard that you must meet to be said “beautiful” or “pretty”. For girls, this is: thin but toned bodies, an acne-free face, tan or “sun kissed” skin, bright, white, perfectly straight teeth, long legs, etc. For guys: strong jaw bone, abs or slightly muscular body, tallness, tan or darker skin, an acne-free face, etc. Now, I know this isn’t what all Americans find beautiful, but most people I know or even people I see on the internet agree that this is usually what a person must be to be considered “hot” or “gorgeous.” In America, though, we are also taught to embrace our body and who we are as a person. Not too many people do this, and many people succumb to the pressure and diet like crazy. Here, also, girls bash on their own figures and constantly feel the need to pick at themselves and find out whats wrong with themselves…
    *ahem*
    Sorry, I’m now rambling. Anyways, although there is not a certain “idol” or person you must look like in America, there is definitely a “who’s hot and who’s not list” thing going on. There is a sort of “standard” which does not apply to everyone here, though. One person may think Person A is ugly while another person may think Person A is the most beautiful thing they’ve ever seen. And then when personalities come into the mix, things get crazy complicated…
    DISCLAIMER: This is based on MY experiences where I live in the southern U.S.A. I’m not sure if this is the definite truth for everyone in all parts of America.

  4. Your topic title should be renamed to “Korean vs Caucasian Standards of Beauty”, and also, the concept of beauty you described for Koreans is also the same concept of beauty that is universal to all human races, which is that Neoteny (physical resemblance to children- big eyes, small face, milky skin) is inherently attractive as a physical trait. It is just that in Korea (as well as other Indo-Chinese/Oriental races), it is held in a higher regard.

  5. I totally agree with what you said about jaw and face shape here in the U.S. If that’s how you naturally look, that’s how you naturally look. Plastic surgery is frowned upon (unless you’re a celeb with tons of money and an image to keep up, though people still talk trash about it anyway) because you should be comfortable in your own skin. The thing in the U.S. is that others should like you for who you are — you shouldn’t have to change, unless it’s for the better (beneficial to you, to others, in a good way). But in South Korea, you should look a certain way. It’s like racism in its own country, honestly. You SHOULD have this skin color, this type of style, this type of jawline, this weight, be this size, etc. Maybe it’s because they’re not as diverse? As liberal? Idk, maybe it’s because I’m used to America’s culture, but theirs seem so unfair.

  6. Cindy Ung

    totally love the Korean fashion and makeup, especially because I live in Korea
    I’ve been blogging about beauty and food of Korea here http://www.cunggie.com
    my friends always ask me where to get stuff and now there’s finally a website !
    http://www.mootta.com

  7. wait I’m confused. I thought heart-shape and v-line was the same thing

  8. Jershey Dionisio

    i want to you introduse your site.

  9. Hi Martina and Simon ( cute pink-haired girls first !) ! I’m from France ! I want to know : What about sex in Korea ? Age for first time or habits… You know, they don’t show sexy things or talks about sex, seems like a pure and innocent country without sexuality, even for idols and it’s pretty awkward for a french girl (Paris, the city of love, you know…). Thank you ! <3 ( SPUDGY IS THE BEST !)

  10. Hi Simon & Martina ! Ok, I’ll get right to it : What about sex in Korea ! Korea seem like really pure and like purity etc… Even idols seems like don’t have sex or there is any sex in dramas… Thanks a lot !

  11. thanks for your nice report. but i think korean are batshit insane when it comes to: i want to look caucasian, but i also want to have a pale skin like a basement dweller. make up your mind. be proud to look korean and not being a plastic frankenstein monster.

  12. my question: Do they (Korean people) like strangers? Do they find us attractive? Oh, I’m courious yeeeahh!!!! :)

  13. Ok…. why on God’s blue Earth…. did you put Jersey Shore people in an article about beauty standards? That is an insult to the beauty standards of both North America AND Korea.

  14. honestnoshameme

    Im Korean and i have double eyelids but i dont have insecurities with my eyes instead i have insecurities with my nose. And it is very true that going to get plastic surgery is a normal thing in South Korea. I told my mom about my insecurities about my nose (i got into a accident when i was little, so the bridge is alittle flat compared to other people). My mother offered me plastic surgery on my nose(smaller,higher,slimmer) and eyes (i want it bigger), which i was delighted to hear. But in every “good” thing ( PLASTIC SURGERY is not good T^T but in my case *in my mind* its good) a bad thing comes along with it. My dad seemed disappointed with my decision to get plastic surgery but told me that i could get it when i go back to SK (which is in 2 years) and im 14 rite now.

  15. Look at Gain’s past pic, I think she shaved her jaw and rhinoplasty (still doubt the rhino cause it looks so natural unlike other celeb)

  16. Could some one please verify this for me? I had a friend who seemed entirely convinced that all Korean people underwent surgery to become the “ideal image”, and that plastic surgery was considered some kind of right of passage in Korean culture. This seemed slightly ridiculous to me, not to mention expensive for everyone, and I was hoping someone might be able to clear this up.

  17. Back when I was younger, my mom would tell me that every new year I need to jump 10 times while pinching my nose so that my nose wouldn’t me flat.
    Also, back when I was 7, my mom told me that I wasn’t allowed to play outside anymore because “my skin was getting too dark”.
    I used to always wonder about these small things, but this video has really cleared a lot of it up.

  18. Awh geez, i’m half korean half american and I didn’t know half of this crap. I do a have a V shaped face though. :D And a eye smile,double-eyelids, and black hair.

  19. Actually, not to contradict anyone but I worked in the beauty industry this last year and part of my training was learning how to teach women to shade their face into the ideal face shape which happens to be oval. People strive to have that face shape.

  20. thank you i enjoyed your video and i totally agree with your point of view about that there are no ideal of beauty standards. my oppinion is that the korean pop culture is based on teens. in korean major music channels its impossible to see diverse music genre. you can see some different musics sometimes but most of them are idol dance music. it has been like this already since 1990. people who don’t like idol music, they won’t be able to find korean music of their interest on tv. the music channels tend to focus only on teenagers. lots of people in our society are annoyed by this fact. also the korean beauty industries support the korean idols for their success. for their own goods selling their products, they make the teenagers believe in existing of beauty standards. me as an adult makes me a lot of concerns, because the cultures should come out from people naturally and not produced by pop stars or by beauty industries. the products made by tv media showing pop stars and beauty companies should not force people to believe in them for their goods. it’s like a brainwash to us. me as a korean, i love my country and culture, but i don’t like the fact that adult people use the naivity of teenagers becoming their consumers. sadly it’s all business.

  21. Sephiroth

    Why do so many PALE AMERICANS complain so much about different races.
    They are obsessed with race. Are they that insecure, do they have to
    make their recessive gene complexes so obvious? SO WHAT IF SOME ASIAN WHAT A BIG EYES IT’S THE SAME AS PALE BIG NOSED AMERICANS WANT TO BE TAN

  22. It’s pretty unfair to leave out the fact that many koreans have “double eyelids”, “big eyes”, “v-lines”, and “small faces’ without having surgery or using products. All of these are naturally occurring characteristics. I just feel like this whole thing implies that koreans are never naturally beautiful (according to their own standards, of course), and that they must have surgery and/or use products to achieve any one of these characteristics. Even still, in no way do I disagree with the use of these products or surgeries; I just think the way this was all expressed is offensive. I know it is not intentional, but that is just the vibe that I’ve gotten from it. Just for kicks, can I also add that “white” people also have eyelid surgery? Megan Fox is just one example.

    I don’t mean to be a hater here, but this is just what I feel.
    Thanks

    • fuuko4869

      Thanks for your input :)
      I was just scrolling through the newly submitted comments and was surprised that someone was reading such an old post.
      In regards to what you said, most of the fans here do not take what Simon and Martina say as the be-all-and-end-all. Many people ask them to talk about topics that can be very touchy, thus we appreciate that they are giving their own personal opinion from their own personal experiences, which may not be reflective of the ENTIRE Korean society, especially since they’re speaking as foreigners and not locals. They try to include disclaimers in these cases, but it is difficult to do that for every point that they discuss – it would end up being a very, very long video. I’m sorry if you were offended.

  23. Lily Yuri Kim

    I never really noticed face size, double eyelids, white skin, etc because I grew up in America but I’ve had conversations with my mother over the years where she talked about how she’s glad my sister and I inherited our dad’s face size and not her’s (weird conversation how if I put my hand over my face, it would cover everything from chin to hairline), how our aunt had slightly darker skin when we were picking up pressed powder to send to Korea, and how happy she was when my face settled in middle school into having double eyelids (yay puberty?).

    And about surgery, I’m visiting Korea and my cousin looked almost unrecognizable. She definitely had her eyes and nose done and had milk pale skin and I could barely see the old her. I could recognize my male cousins with no problems but I was like whoaaa when I saw her.

  24. oh those double eyelids! lol
    I found out what actualy words “double eyelids” mean only when I got hooked by K-pop and K-dramas! I seriously didn’t know! XD

  25. Wills Buenaflor Gomez

    I can’t believe there’s actually an ideal type for beauty in Korea. Here, in where I live, as long as your facial features go really well with each other, you’re considered beautiful, whether you are tanned or fair-skinned.

    On the side note, I didn’t even understand the concept of mono eyelids and double eyelids until I discovered K-pop.

  26. HAVImoral

    I don’t entirely agree with this.. Koreans do not have some ridiculous, unobtainable standard of beauty…. if any country does it is america i mean look at jersey shore! I just got back from visiting Seoul with my fiance, he is South Korean, and my darker complexion didn’t make his family think of me as less attractive they were very frank about it actually… His mom actually said i was even prettier than shed expected upon finding out i was Dominicano DUH DUH DUHHHHHH… they were thrown of by my waist length hair by me being black (thought i was a sunburned) lol. I was very nervous we i did go because of all the horror stories or racism.. but all i experienced was curiousity… not bigotry… they had never seen a black hispanic woman before and were amused upon learning i didnt speak english ( got to love google translate) i guess what im saying is dont judge a book by its cover….. i was scared of america… not that bad… and i was scared of South Korea I was beautiful 

  27. interesting…! have you heard of 동안(baby face)? I believe it’s a new beauty trend in Korea!

  28. Allison Williams

    I have noticed that (being in Taiwan) that bigger eyes are ideal-in fact there are some people I know who have been made fun of (in not nessisarily bad ways) for having “small eyes” and many of my girl Taiwanese friends are always complaining about their eye size, how their eyes are so small/squinty and ugly, and how they envy/wish they could have my eyes (I’m Caucasian) to which I always reply “Girl, you crazy, your eyes are beautiful, they are the exact same size as my eyes, and I wish I could have YOUR eyes!” I love asian’s eyes, I think they are so beautiful.

  29. haha…i don’t agree about korean beauty standard is v-line and big eye..
    i think it’s GLOBAL beauty standard…
    if not, why woman use EYELINER and FACE CONTOUR..?? XD
    for big eye and small face…right?

  30. irritablevowel

    Oh, there is definitely a western beauty ideal.  It’s just that what we choose to focus on allows for enough variation to give the impression of variety (if that makes sense).  I’m staring at Marie Claire right now, and it’s telling me that my: 

    Nose should be long and narrow

    Lips should be pouty. 

    Hair should be shiny and bouncy (color doesn’t matter, as long as it’s shiny)

    Body should be thin, but not too thin.  I should also be tall, but not too tall.   Breasts, bottoms and hips can vary (my humps).

    Face shape is not really important, though models tend to have oval shapes.  

    It’s a standard that favors Europeans, but by allowing wiggle room with face shape, humps, and hair color, it can accommodate any ethnic background.  Check out Chris Rock’s documentary “Good Hair”, where he discusses the BILLIONS of dollars African-American women spend every year in pursuit of “ideal” hair.   

  31. Just wanted to say that I like how you added some pics to the written part of this post. It added a lot to what you wrote!
    ps you guys rock!

  32. Anonymous

    I wonder if you guys could do one about korean attitudes vs american attitudes? Because i read online that seungri isn’t liked that much by korean netizens because he’s cocky, but i love his confidence. Also, what are some likeable and socially accepted characteristics of women?

  33. Anonymous

    ㅋㅋ 이상형이란 단어를 가지고 저리 해석을 못하다니 ㅉㅉㅉ. I’m not going to go in detail saying this but you guys are misunderstanding the term ‘IDEAL.’ Define 이상형; just ask some random Korean person, i don’t think it’s that hard.

  34. Anonymous

    ㅋㅋ 이상형이란 단어를 가지고 저리 해석을 못하다니 ㅉㅉㅉ. I’m not going to go in detail saying this but you guys are misunderstanding the term ‘IDEAL.’ Define 이상형; just ask some random Korean person, i don’t think it’s that hard.

  35. I naturally have very pale skin and I burn instantly, so I always cover myself with strong SPF. I also don’t like tanning because during very sunny and bright weather I get sympthoms of claustrophoby (seriously! O.O) so I usually stay in the shadow. So basically I’m usually pretty pale, even after holidays. But I definitely find pale skin much prettier than tanned one – and I’m Caucasian. I go after version that pale skin = delicacy, luxury etc. I find milk-skinned girls beautiful as well, but it differs with men, because I like either porcelain-type or dark-type ^^ That’s why I consider Korean guys as totally awesome as well as latino guys (not ALL of them, though).

    And wow, notice that even if the difference for us, Caucasians, isn’t that big – either darker guys, like Lee Minho, and milk-skinned ones, like Key, are totally LOVED in Korea ^^ And they kinda represent different styles.

  36. I naturally have very pale skin and I burn instantly, so I always cover myself with strong SPF. I also don’t like tanning because during very sunny and bright weather I get sympthoms of claustrophoby (seriously! O.O) so I usually stay in the shadow. So basically I’m usually pretty pale, even after holidays. But I definitely find pale skin much prettier than tanned one – and I’m Caucasian. I go after version that pale skin = delicacy, luxury etc. I find milk-skinned girls beautiful as well, but it differs with men, because I like either porcelain-type or dark-type ^^ That’s why I consider Korean guys as totally awesome as well as latino guys (not ALL of them, though).

    And wow, notice that even if the difference for us, Caucasians, isn’t that big – either darker guys, like Lee Minho, and milk-skinned ones, like Key, are totally LOVED in Korea ^^ And they kinda represent different styles.

  37. I naturally have very pale skin and I burn instantly, so I always cover myself with strong SPF. I also don’t like tanning because during very sunny and bright weather I get sympthoms of claustrophoby (seriously! O.O) so I usually stay in the shadow. So basically I’m usually pretty pale, even after holidays. But I definitely find pale skin much prettier than tanned one – and I’m Caucasian. I go after version that pale skin = delicacy, luxury etc. I find milk-skinned girls beautiful as well, but it differs with men, because I like either porcelain-type or dark-type ^^ That’s why I consider Korean guys as totally awesome as well as latino guys (not ALL of them, though).

    And wow, notice that even if the difference for us, Caucasians, isn’t that big – either darker guys, like Lee Minho, and milk-skinned ones, like Key, are totally LOVED in Korea ^^ And they kinda represent different styles.

  38. Margaret Kim

    My asian friends always tell me how jealous they are that I have double eyelids. I think this whole obsession with a specific beauty is just silly. Don’t you wish they are able to see different types of beauty and that it can be exotic, not ugly? No wonder there are so many clones in Korea. (I can say this for myself since I am Korean, raised in a 100% western culture.)

  39. Recently I like my skin to be light o-o but in the sun i get tan so fast, i almost never burn >.>

    You know a very long time ago it was considered beautiful if you were chubby around the stomach o-o you have alot of paintings from that time with women like that =)

  40. Anonymous

    lol my Korean friend loves my fair (pale) skin. She says it’s really pretty and that she wants skin like mine. The only reason I’m fair is because I use sunscreen because if I’m out in the sun for too long I’ll burn. Or it’ll look like I got burnt but then really I just got tanner :P I’m Japanese btw~ and OMG when I saw Gain I was like “YEAAAAH!! GAIN!!! I LOVE HER!!! WOOOOO” lol

  41. Hey Simon where did you get that t-shirt on this vid?

  42. Hey Simon where did you get that t-shirt on this vid?

  43. Hey Simon where did you get that t-shirt on this vid?

  44. Hey Simon where did you get that t-shirt on this vid?

  45. Hey Simon where did you get that t-shirt on this vid?

  46. Hey Simon where did you get that t-shirt on this vid?

  47. Hey Simon where did you get that t-shirt on this vid?

  48. Hey Simon where did you get that t-shirt on this vid?

  49. Hey Simon where did you get that t-shirt on this vid?

  50. Hey Simon where did you get that t-shirt on this vid?

  51. Hey Simon where did you get that t-shirt on this vid?

  52. Hey Simon where did you get that t-shirt on this vid?

  53. Hey Simon where did you get that t-shirt on this vid?

  54. Hey Simon where did you get that t-shirt on this vid?

  55. Hey Simon where did you get that t-shirt on this vid?

  56. Hey Simon where did you get that t-shirt on this vid?

  57. Korea is more of a trend country, headstrong and prideful. My friend straight from Korea is probably one of the most narrow minded people I’ve ever met… She’s fairly ignorant and does that whole cutesy act that disgusts me so much I’ve wanted to smack it out of her. It’s probably because Korea isn’t so diverse so we who lives in more diverse areas should be more open minded to the fact that people in Korea just don’t have the chances like we do.
    I’ve been living in the U.S. and I’m fairly open minded to new things, and I would one day love to move back to Korea, but my friend who returned from Korea after living in the U.S. told me I’ll probably hate it there the first year. She never gave me a reason but I think she may be right.

    • galitarian

      You know what, some westerners are narrow minded too. They underestimate non-Western cultures bc they think their culture is the standard. For example, some Americans get mad when people of the country they are traveling in cannot speak Enlgish. But I admit that Koreans are relatively not used to accepting something new and different. I’m korean BTW.

  58. Wowwwwwwww. It’s totally what I wanna say. :)
    yessssssssssss, every korean seems like have simillar taste or view toward beauty, esp appearence of women. I think u guys mayb saw some of ur students have plastic surgery…. I think it’s tragic .. :(

  59. Parents of my Korean friends would tell my that I am small for a foreigner, which I was not sure if it was a compliment or just a racist comment about foreigners.. (? _ ?)
    Koreans are really obsessed with appearance and will spend so much money and time on it, mostly because the social pressure to look a certain way is very important. Not being Korean and living there at least gives you an advantage as that beauty ideal does not apply to foreigners! Also, In most western cultures we value differences but in Korea people actually want to look the same and me homogeneous.

  60. I lol’d so hard when ubersexual was brought up! hahahahahahahaha, made my day XD

  61. I lol’d so hard when ubersexual was brought up! hahahahahahahaha, made my day XD

  62. You guys totally just explained wth a v-line massage is supposed to do LOL. I saw a SHINee video and Key was talking about that and I was like, “huh?” But yea, and I LOVE high cheekbones, and think Key’s (yes, another SHINee reference) cheeks are amazing. He’s a very beautiful man :3

  63. You guys totally just explained wth a v-line massage is supposed to do LOL. I saw a SHINee video and Key was talking about that and I was like, “huh?” But yea, and I LOVE high cheekbones, and think Key’s (yes, another SHINee reference) cheeks are amazing. He’s a very beautiful man :3

  64. I’m curious about how do these people considered ‘beautiful’ get any benefits in their life in Korea..do they get jobs easily? do more people want to associate with them? do they easily get samples or discounts in stores?..all this just cause they are ‘easier on the eyes’??

    • Rather than benefits, I think it’s more of self satisfaction

    • GoldenMediocrity

      They do get more benefits. When applying for a job, they must attach a professional photo of themselves to their resume. From what my Korean adult students have told me, young (under 25 for women) “beautiful” people get hired and promoted before “ugly” people of equal talent/skill. It’s really sad but it’s here in Canada too, just in not so blatant ways.

  65. Janice Jose-Chan

    Pale, “caucasian” skin tone is an ideal that is common in most Asian countries, not just Korea. I think the reason is because for a lot of Asian cultures, it’s been long believed that paler skin signifies that you’re upper class (ie. you’re not subjected to having to work outside and therefore get dark). And it’s not just about staying out of the sun, but there are many products available in Asia that are supposed to whiten or bleach your skin, which isn’t necessarily a good thing either. In fact, don’t a lot of BB Creams claim that they whiten the skin? If you watch Asian television, you will notice that most celebrities are paler-skinned. I’ve even noticed this watching Mexican telenovas. As for the double eye lid thing, I never really understood the desire for that as I have double eyelids myself, but my husband has expressed wanting to get the surgery done on himself! o_0

  66. Helen Li

    About the white skin thing. It is not necessarily just to look like caucasians as paler skin has aways been a classic beauty standard. The historical roots of linkng pale skin, social status and beauty is almost non-existant today; infact it might be totally opposite, as it is more desirable to have a healthy sun kissed glow since the common labourers of today seem to have transitioned from hauling dirt to sitting 8 hours a day under fluorescent lights. However, considering that Asian culture(s) tends to hang on to status quo more than Western cultures it is easy to see how the desire for pale skin has perpetuated over time. In other words, you don’t see too many cultural rebels in places like China and Korea cause there are just way too many damn people who keep the old mindsets, you gotta have a whole heck lot of people on your team to make a big change.

    But anyways, concerning white people, I think a part of the fascination is that for whatever goal in life we humans look for a realistic physical embodiment of that goal. In this case, Asian people met Caucasions and was like totally, “OMFG! That’s so like totally like the shade I was going for.” Hence, asian people hold Caucasions as a golden standard of ultimate paleness. In no way does this mean we want to be Caucasions. We just wanna have your skin tone… but we don’t want any of that food baby sort of thing that comes with eating Caucasion diets if you get my drift.

    Anyways, we don’t want to be White, we just want to be white.

    As for the V-line, compared to round or square jaw lines, it makes people look more … dainty (sometimes it’s hard to translate to english).

  67. Hm… I’d be curious about how an African/African American person like me is treated in Korea (celebrity or otherwise)… Seems like it may be hard for most to meet the “pale skin” category.  Simon and Martina please weigh in :-)

  68. The thing about the face size is true. A Korean friend of mine told me that actually, if your face is so small that it can be covered by a CD then you are considered beautyful or at least you have many points in favour… yeah, I don’t really know… :/

  69. Carrie Gagnon

    I don’t understand why my comment that a barbie-style look is technically an American “standard” of beauty was deleted.  So many people are writing negative crap on here and I was just pointing out that yes, blonde hair and blue eyes are something that at least a good amount of people see as something desirable. 

    • Carrie Gagnon

      And I never once said it was MY personal idea of what is beautiful, but as a whole, that’s what people gravitate toward.  How many girls do you know who have dark hair get highlights or bleach it blonde?  How many naturally blonde girls do you know go dark?  Hmmm…  Of course there are exceptions, but if you can’t at least admit that blonde hair is something seen as attractive in America, you are in denial.

  70. have u tried baviphat slim v line maker? it sounds like a hoax to me… =/ I’d prefer the face roller

  71. have u tried baviphat slim v line maker? it sounds like a hoax to me… =/ I’d prefer the face roller

  72. have u tried baviphat slim v line maker? it sounds like a hoax to me… =/ I’d prefer the face roller

  73. lots of things could be said about this topic, but the one thing i want to mention specifically is that the idea of “Standard Asian Beauty” is different between Asia and Eastern cultures (and from there slightly different b/w the different cultures) to those of the Western cultures.  to call out one example of this is eye shape. most asians like big eyes because 1) its fairly rare, 2) eyes are considered universally as the windows to the soul (aka, jewels of the human face) 3) one of the most expressive portions of a humans’ face.  if anything, it may even be said that EVERYONE considers big eyes to be a standard of beauty.  however, when looking at the Western standard of what is typically Asian Beauty (i.e. actresses such as lucy liu; models such as du juan and han jin) the eyes are very much “oriental” and they are typically not considered “hot/beautiful” to everyday asians.  it’s a matter of perception (and maybe even light segregation?) that may lead to this idea that standards of beauty is different.

    and lets face it.  koreans are blunt people, and since society as a human species is pretty superficial, the koreans just seem call it out more often.food for thought.

  74. Finally, somebody mentioned these……I also have thought about these long before but I assume maybe I was wrong in judging these solely based on what I saw……after you guys raised this issue,I do have few things I can’t fully cope about korean culture……sometimes I came across many articles on korean celebrities or idols about some goddess-like selca, beautiful long legs, no make-up face, white skin, perfect body ratio and other related kind of subjects….I always wonder, do these type of topics are needed?Really?……Do they have to emphasize on these?…….I’m not trying to be negative,but objectively speaking, they are all celebrities, and people know they are beautiful, pretty or what not but I believe making articles over these are unimportant unless for their album, movie or drama promotion and alike…….Do Korean like to read those?…How white or pale that person’s skin, what is the measurement for their body or leg ratio or how they are looking good even without makeup……I’m not being sarcastic here, only out of curiosity…….However, I do hope someday they would stop these nonsenses because I know these artists are somewhat affected from it and feel the burden and pressure to be realized of their beauty or being overly-conscious about it and they forgot that talents and high quality of performances last longer than beauty……..a beauty will never last forever but a talented and high quality artist will always be in memory…….

  75. ohhhh how i wish i didn’t tan soooo easily just going outside makes me darker it aint fair i want to at least stay lighter brown or an a little bit more lighter poop!! ):

  76. Since you talked about this in your post, what is your opinion on Suju’s Shindong getting double-eyelid surgery? I’m just curious to know your point of view concerning celebrities :)

  77. Since you talked about this in your post, what is your opinion on Suju’s Shindong getting double-eyelid surgery? I’m just curious to know your point of view concerning celebrities :)

  78. Since you talked about this in your post, what is your opinion on Suju’s Shindong getting double-eyelid surgery? I’m just curious to know your point of view concerning celebrities :)

  79. Since you talked about this in your post, what is your opinion on Suju’s Shindong getting double-eyelid surgery? I’m just curious to know your point of view concerning celebrities :)

  80. Since you talked about this in your post, what is your opinion on Suju’s Shindong getting double-eyelid surgery? I’m just curious to know your point of view concerning celebrities :)

  81. Since you talked about this in your post, what is your opinion on Suju’s Shindong getting double-eyelid surgery? I’m just curious to know your point of view concerning celebrities :)

  82. Since you talked about this in your post, what is your opinion on Suju’s Shindong getting double-eyelid surgery? I’m just curious to know your point of view concerning celebrities :)

  83. Since you talked about this in your post, what is your opinion on Suju’s Shindong getting double-eyelid surgery? I’m just curious to know your point of view concerning celebrities :)

  84. Since you talked about this in your post, what is your opinion on Suju’s Shindong getting double-eyelid surgery? I’m just curious to know your point of view concerning celebrities :)

  85. Since you talked about this in your post, what is your opinion on Suju’s Shindong getting double-eyelid surgery? I’m just curious to know your point of view concerning celebrities :)

  86. Since you talked about this in your post, what is your opinion on Suju’s Shindong getting double-eyelid surgery? I’m just curious to know your point of view concerning celebrities :)

  87. Since you talked about this in your post, what is your opinion on Suju’s Shindong getting double-eyelid surgery? I’m just curious to know your point of view concerning celebrities :)

  88. Since you talked about this in your post, what is your opinion on Suju’s Shindong getting double-eyelid surgery? I’m just curious to know your point of view concerning celebrities :)

  89. Since you talked about this in your post, what is your opinion on Suju’s Shindong getting double-eyelid surgery? I’m just curious to know your point of view concerning celebrities :)

  90. Since you talked about this in your post, what is your opinion on Suju’s Shindong getting double-eyelid surgery? I’m just curious to know your point of view concerning celebrities :)

  91. Since you talked about this in your post, what is your opinion on Suju’s Shindong getting double-eyelid surgery? I’m just curious to know your point of view concerning celebrities :)

  92. Since you talked about this in your post, what is your opinion on Suju’s Shindong getting double-eyelid surgery? I’m just curious to know your point of view concerning celebrities :)

  93. reality check

    Thank you for this vid. I didn’t think I’d realize so many things from a relatively trivial subject. For one, I think it’s not only Koreans who have this thing for wanting to stay pale. I think most Asians have it. Just today I went to look for something that would help clear out my acne (I need help), I went through all the shelves but they were all littered with ‘whitening’ products. Although we know most ‘white’ people are envious of our natural tan there are still a lot of us who prefer to be pale/white. I think the reason is also similar to being pale meant being priveleged or something along that line. V-line and double eyelid…I cannot relate to. Monolid or double eyelid — beautiful either way. One thing unique about Korean beauty standard is the relatively more ‘feminine’ look for guys. Most of my uninitiated friends almost always ask me if a certain KIdol is ‘gay’ when they see photos of them. They don’t really mean to insult but the look most Korean male celebrities display are kind of very off from our general standard with regards to masculinity although it is rapidly changing now, ironically, thanks to KPop. So i guess it’s really just ‘different strokes for different folks’ when it comes to beauty standards although there does seem like a lot of similarities here and there. 

  94. I have a question. What’s the hardest thing you’ve had to accept living in Korea that you don’t really like?

  95. Hey guys, thanks so much for all those videos! It helps a lot!
    Well… I was wondering.. I might go there in a few months, and I was wondering : What Korean think about peoples with freckles? (No one has been able to answer this question.. o/)
    Well, it’s not a big deal but… I’m afraid they might not accept me because of that. (Have go freckles & red hair)
    Keep doing a great job! You guys rooooooock! :)

  96. Hey guys, thanks so much for all those videos! It helps a lot!
    Well… I was wondering.. I might go there in a few months, and I was wondering : What Korean think about peoples with freckles? (No one has been able to answer this question.. o/)
    Well, it’s not a big deal but… I’m afraid they might not accept me because of that. (Have go freckles & red hair)
    Keep doing a great job! You guys rooooooock! :)

  97. Hope I don’t offend anyone when I say this, but I had some weird experiences in South Korea. I mean I’m Czech-Hungarian Japanese and I grew up in the U.S. So when I went over there to visit a friend and have a good time, things got really weird. For example my friends “friends” kept asking her apparently if I was Korean-American and when she said “his part Japanese” they looked at her weirdly and said (apparently) “why is he so good looking if his Japanese?” So obviously being from a place where racism isn’t tolerated I was like OMG. Another was the whole shouting thing which I thought only Japanese girls did (yes I’m weird) we were playing beach-volleyball and I made a point and every girl around me started shouting something so I freaked and was like wtf. Until my friend told me “their cheering for you and your long legs”, so yeah maybe its just culture shock but next time I visit I am definitely preparing myself lol. Thanks to anyone who read this long comment ^^

  98. Anonymous

    Seeing these different cultural beauty standards reminds me of how in first world countries being skinny is beautiful, but in other countries like Uganda being fat is considered beautiful.

  99. Anonymous

    Seeing these different cultural beauty standards reminds me of how in first world countries being skinny is beautiful, but in other countries like Uganda being fat is considered beautiful.

  100. jelliekookie

    I’m a Flipina with tanned skin. Not so dark but not so light either. I used to hate my skin tone (teased about it by friends in the Philippines when I was younger), but I was once in this play (Moved to Dubai) and a Belgian girl was doing my make up. She said that she’d kill to have my skin tone, because when she goes sunbathing, she burns. And when she puts tanning lotion, she turns orange. After that, I started to love my skin. ^_^

  101. Okay.. I have mono eyelids, heart shaped face, and yellowish skin.
    So that means in Korea, I am ugly :(

  102. Actually most Asians do prefer fair skin cause we think its beautiful . But we try not to get tanned because we don’t think its healthy cause the sun damages the skin and it causes you to age… etc .

  103. Oh Korea you sound like such a paradise to a ginger like me! No more vampire comparisons! The ability to find products w/ SPF in them! AND Lots of pretty parasols!!! Sounds great!

  104. I’ve got to say, where I live tanning is pretty popular and most people my mother’s age will chide at me for being so pale. I do agree that something needs to be done with my skin (XD) it’s not white but sickly pale. Even so, I cannot stand to tan. Last time I went to the beach and got this nice, olive tan – I accepted it at the beginning, but then my face started getting darker and darker and it looked as if I were dirty, not tanned. So I can understand them – some skins just haven’t been made for tanning XD

  105. People trying to avoid getting a tan is because they do not want to look like a peasant . Unfortunately, Koreans have pale skin and it turns dark very easily if one is exposed to the sun for even a short while. The aristocratic class that existed up to the early 20th century did not have to work in the farm fields and had pale skin unlike the peasants. It is analogous to Americans having not a good image on Caucasian Americans living in the south and have a deep tan. (a.k.a rednecks) 

  106. People trying to avoid getting a tan is because they do not want to look like a peasant . Unfortunately, Koreans have pale skin and it turns dark very easily if one is exposed to the sun for even a short while. The aristocratic class that existed up to the early 20th century did not have to work in the farm fields and had pale skin unlike the peasants. It is analogous to Americans having not a good image on Caucasian Americans living in the south and have a deep tan. (a.k.a rednecks) 

  107. My wife and I live in South Korea first in Jihaeng-dong Donduchoe-si and now in Seoul and we got quite a kick out of your video.  Koreans take the beautiful thing so seriously sometimes, I mean, in the train car they might look in the hand held mirror at least two dozen times before they reach their next stop.  Several things that you left out is the masculine issues that Koreans have, or lack of.  It is only when Koreans really start to hang around Americans especially soldiers that they notice a masculine inferiority.  They will start hitting the gym real hard because it is only then due they develop this complex.  Tell the truth looking at a men in this country it is hard to distinguish them from the females especially in media.   

    • wookiekie1205

      Hey my friend, Do you want to bring a Macho man or a tough cowboy in this issue? You are far out of the arguing point in this video. Anyway one thing that I really get confused is N America’s value on masculine and famine. You people sometimes proclaim gay people right and sometimes rigorous protect man’s role and woman’s role. The most conservative nation in the world could be N America in this issue, I think. Is this another ‘diversity’? or ‘sexism’? or ‘double standard’? or ‘ignorance’?
      Please be ‘enlightened’.

      • Anonymous

        I don’t think you can really say that the most conservative nation in the world on this issue is the US, considering that we do not, unlike some countries, putting people to death or in prison for being gay, and there more and more gay celebrities that are out and accepted, gay story lines in movies/tv shows, and gay marriage is more and more accepted here.  But you are right that we still have a long ways to go.

    • Anonymous

      I’m not sure exactly what you meant (or if you are just trolling), but are you saying that American men make Korean men feel inferior regarding their masculinity? I’m sure that’s true for some men because there are insecure people all over the world, but I really don’t see Korean men worrying too much about the fact that their idea of what it means to be masculine is sometimes different from our American ideas. And I really like that about them. Although I generally like American standards of masculinity, since that’s what I grew up with, I do not like how rigid it is, and how if you don’t look and act a certain way, you’re “not a man.” That’s oppressive. 

    • Anonymous

      I’m not sure exactly what you meant (or if you are just trolling), but are you saying that American men make Korean men feel inferior regarding their masculinity? I’m sure that’s true for some men because there are insecure people all over the world, but I really don’t see Korean men worrying too much about the fact that their idea of what it means to be masculine is sometimes different from our American ideas. And I really like that about them. Although I generally like American standards of masculinity, since that’s what I grew up with, I do not like how rigid it is, and how if you don’t look and act a certain way, you’re “not a man.” That’s oppressive. 

    • Anonymous

      I’m not sure exactly what you meant (or if you are just trolling), but are you saying that American men make Korean men feel inferior regarding their masculinity? I’m sure that’s true for some men because there are insecure people all over the world, but I really don’t see Korean men worrying too much about the fact that their idea of what it means to be masculine is sometimes different from our American ideas. And I really like that about them. Although I generally like American standards of masculinity, since that’s what I grew up with, I do not like how rigid it is, and how if you don’t look and act a certain way, you’re “not a man.” That’s oppressive. 

    • Anonymous

      I’m not sure exactly what you meant (or if you are just trolling), but are you saying that American men make Korean men feel inferior regarding their masculinity? I’m sure that’s true for some men because there are insecure people all over the world, but I really don’t see Korean men worrying too much about the fact that their idea of what it means to be masculine is sometimes different from our American ideas. And I really like that about them. Although I generally like American standards of masculinity, since that’s what I grew up with, I do not like how rigid it is, and how if you don’t look and act a certain way, you’re “not a man.” That’s oppressive. 

  108. My wife and I live in South Korea first in Jihaeng-dong Donduchoe-si and now in Seoul and we got quite a kick out of your video.  Koreans take the beautiful thing so seriously sometimes, I mean, in the train car they might look in the hand held mirror at least two dozen times before they reach their next stop.  Several things that you left out is the masculine issues that Koreans have, or lack of.  It is only when Koreans really start to hang around Americans especially soldiers that they notice a masculine inferiority.  They will start hitting the gym real hard because it is only then due they develop this complex.  Tell the truth looking at a men in this country it is hard to distinguish them from the females especially in media.   

  109. wookiekie1205

    Hmmm. I cannot agree with that Simon and Martina regarding different beauty standard between two regions. Because I’m in US right now, so many Americans say “why Asians have the one beauty standard? it is bad!” I’m really sick and tired of this meaningless issue and argument. You people say that Koreans have one standard including several essential beauty points and it seems that you guys say N Americans do not have one strict beauty standard. However, I cannot agree with that the only difference between two regions is Korean usually have and say one beauty standard explicitly and N Americans hide it within themselves, so even they cannot realize it sometimes. I think most of N Americans express their ideas wrapped with so called equality and fairness, but close your eyes and think about it; you can imagine one beauty standard whether you are a Asian or not. Please do not deceive yourself.
    I want to say all of the globe where Western culture can get through have one standard. The standard can have a little bit of margin of error, but the one standard is same mostly and undeniably. And think about who makes the one beauty standard; Koreans or the Westerners. You already know the answer.

    • Anonymous

      What’s the standard that you see us N. Americans agreeing on? If I put 10 of my friends in a room and had them describe their ideal face shape, or their ideal nose, or their ideal eye shape, I won’t get them to agree on one answer. You are correct if you mean that most people would agree that, say, Jessica Alba is pretty, so most N. Americans agree on who is pretty and who is not (but see, for example, Julia Roberts).  But I really don’t think we have one set standard that we all want to look like, one nose we all want to have, one face shape we all want to have, one appearance that is THE ideal, that kind of thing.  I would be very interested to hear what you think the standard is, if you are saying that there is one. Maybe you see something we don’t. 
      I don’t think Simon and Martina were criticizing Korea with their observations, so I hope you were not offended. 

      • wookiekie1205

        Hi, Thanks for the reply.

        Some of my expressions were quite exaggerated, but the point is you could
        pick whose nose is the most beautiful if I give you several images of
        nose shape. Your friends would not agree on the ‘one’ nose shape, but I
        am sure that significant majority might agree with one nose shape and
        they say it is ‘better than’ the others and the one might be very close
        to the westerner’s traditional nose shape. I cannot say the only ‘one’,
        but I am sure there is one ‘nose’ shape that everybody admires and loves
        (people who grew up with western culture). You bring the example of
        Julia Roberts, but she is not a good example because we like her not
        just because of her physical beauty, but her image that represents beauty.
        As I can remind her easily, many others know her because she is famous
        world star! I would say her image is closer to ‘attractive’ than
        ‘beautiful’ because she have strong character.

        My major arguing point is the value of ‘equality’ is too ‘strong’ in
        the N America especially in US. It is obviously good phenomenon, but
        this social tendency has led people in US (I have never been Canada, so
        actually I cannot say Canada has same tendency, but I think two
        countries are very similar.) to conceal their inner mind; They are tend to
        pretend (Im sorry. I use strong word) that they follow the value of
        equality in every issues and many of them believe they behave with value of equality, but I do not
        think so. People say a dignity as a job of president and plumber is equally respectable, but we frankly cannot agree that value judgement;
        people say with their lips about equality, but they don’t think so in their inner mind.
        It is quite off example, but I want to say that Western culture has
        produced, consumed, spread and sometimes forced ‘the value’(including
        beauty) for a long time; we cannot make a clean slate even if we wish to
        in reality.

        What I do not like is the weird idea of ‘SOME’ N Americans who insist
        ‘we have value on equality, but you Asians don’t. what a mass’. The
        funny thing is the fact that they don’t think and act with the value of equality in reality.

        p.s As a same logic that you bring, the reason why I watch EATYOURKIMCHI
        is the foreigners’ points of view toward Koreans are the view that I
        cannot see about Korean because I am Korean. And I can see something
        that you cannot see because I am not N American.

        One more p.s. Did you know that ? usually when N Americans say ‘no
        offence’, it means ‘I already made offence or I will make a offence, so
        be prepared’.– thats what I feel. No offence.

        Thanks
         

        • Jennifer N.

          You’re going way the hell out there and explaining political and social views of a mixed continent. There’s no way in hell of pin-point one set standard in North America because you just can’t when there’s white, black, yellow, brown and in between around every corner.

  110. Guys, first of all thanks a lot for this video, it tackles the topic I’ve been interested in for years and actually did some studies about back in my uni years. However, I’d like to point out one tiny little thing you might want to take into consideration (yeah, nagging part starts here): it is not true that the western world does not have a beauty standard – it very much does, and it’s actually very interesting to watch how it’s been changing over centuries. Don’t confuse personal taste (“*I* like this” statements) with what’s widely considered beautiful in your society (“This *is* pretty”). I think what adds to confusion is the political correctness of North America? Now, I have never been there so I can only base my opinion on a few books, teachers and North American friends, but it seems plausible that, living in a highly multicultural society where you have to literally watch your every word, Americans have developed a difficulty in expressing general statements. It is simply safer to say “I don’t like it” than “This is ugly”. However, it doesn’t mean the standards for beauty do not exist – they are simply not verbalized. But take a look at pop singers, models, TV presenters, even cartoons, try to overlook additions political correctness options required (there has to be at least one overweight person, non-Caucasian person, etc.) – and you can trace the standard without breaking a sweat. On the other hand, Asian culture will have you accept general opinion as your own. It will expect you to take the “this is pretty” statement as equal or actually even more important than “I like it”. Political correctness is not an issue, and it is limited to not telling “ugly” people they are “ugly”. On the plus side, the beauty standard is more in the open, on the minus side – it is being forced on you.

    • Michelle

      Thank you! There is definitely a standard for beauty here in North America, that I really feel as a Chinese teenager in Canada. There are all these pictures of the Gossip Girl cast or The Vampire Diaries or some other show, and they’re all tall, thin, young, with typical defined Caucasian features. Same with Asian beauty, just to the nth degree. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a woman with thighs that actually touch in any Asian media, and it’s like the pressure to be tall, thin, pale, and have big eyes is just intensified compared to Western media.

      PS, I always notice the double eyelid. I think it’s just an Asian thing.

  111. It makes me cringe that so many Koreans want to get their eyes “fixed” :( I think Asians are beauuuutiful people… a lot of it comes from the fact that I have Japanese and half-Japanese family members I think… I always thought my step-aunts and my step-uncle were some of the most beautiful people I had ever met. Asian hair…. eyes… skin… so jealous!

  112. Tanning is also unthinkable in Indian culture. I always heard my mom tell me to put a hat on or not to go outside too much bc then I will get darker. It’s interesting. Walk into any Indian store and they have whintening products that help to make ur skin whiter. But I never see this product outside of Inidan stores. They only have tanning products. My friends think being pale is ugly. While in India, the paler u r, the more beautiful you are. Every culture has a set of standards when it comes to beauty.

  113. Tanning is also unthinkable in Indian culture. I always heard my mom tell me to put a hat on or not to go outside too much bc then I will get darker. It’s interesting. Walk into any Indian store and they have whintening products that help to make ur skin whiter. But I never see this product outside of Inidan stores. They only have tanning products. My friends think being pale is ugly. While in India, the paler u r, the more beautiful you are. Every culture has a set of standards when it comes to beauty.

  114. Tanning is also unthinkable in Indian culture. I always heard my mom tell me to put a hat on or not to go outside too much bc then I will get darker. It’s interesting. Walk into any Indian store and they have whintening products that help to make ur skin whiter. But I never see this product outside of Inidan stores. They only have tanning products. My friends think being pale is ugly. While in India, the paler u r, the more beautiful you are. Every culture has a set of standards when it comes to beauty.

  115. Tanning is also unthinkable in Indian culture. I always heard my mom tell me to put a hat on or not to go outside too much bc then I will get darker. It’s interesting. Walk into any Indian store and they have whintening products that help to make ur skin whiter. But I never see this product outside of Inidan stores. They only have tanning products. My friends think being pale is ugly. While in India, the paler u r, the more beautiful you are. Every culture has a set of standards when it comes to beauty.

  116. hey guys. im new to your videos but they are awesome. are small lips also something that koreans look at? i know other asian cultures do but i wasnt sure if koreans did. also, you might have already touched on this topic or question but i was wondering…me & my friend are both hispanic and we were wondering if you have seen any hispanic-korean couples? 

  117. Since my internet takes forever to load the video, I just keep replaying Simon’s “BASEBALL BAT” song thing in the beginning. I crack up everytime x’D

  118. Anonymous

    Oh my god! Rain with double eye lid??? That’s just like TOP knowing how to dance: NO WAY!!! ;)

  119. Anonymous

    Oh my god! Rain with double eye lid??? That’s just like TOP knowing how to dance: NO WAY!!! ;)

  120. Guys, I love your videos but I kinda stopped watching them a while ago because of the background music. It’s not bad, don’t get me wrong… there’s just too much of it. It’s too loud and after about half a minute it gives me a headache. :( I wish there was some way to turn it down but still hear you guys talking. I know you can’t make everyone happy but I had to have my moan. :p

  121. kingdomprincess

    One of my close girlfriends just got a eye widening and double eyelid surgery. I couldn’t understand why she didn’t think she was beautiful because she really was (and still is) gorgeous. She was constantly calling herself ugly and fat (which she was like a size 4 ….is this fat? I think not). When I asked her why she thought she was ugly and she really didn’t have a answer other than she didn’t have what Simon and Martina mentioned in their video. She still is pretty but she just doesn’t have tiny eyes anymore, and now she thinks she is the most beautiful person ever. I kind of resented her at first because I have always tried to build her up and tell her that she is pretty, but then she went and got her eyes done. I was just upset, and she was ashamed to tell me so had to hear about it from other friends like a month after she had it done. After this all happened I realized that no matter what I had said it wasn’t going to change anything because she had grown up in a culture that had constantly told her she wasn’t beautiful enough until she got ____ fixed. I still love her and I want her to see herself the way God sees her, but I just wish she didn’t have to get surgery to feel that she is beautiful.

    I don’t know where I stand on the whole plastic surgery debate, but I definitely don’t like what it is doing to my generation. I have grown up in a Christian home where all I have ever heard and learned is that I am made to look like this for a reason and changing or hating my appearance is hating God’s creation. I will live my life thinking and believing Songs of Solomon 4:7, and I hope that other girls (and boys) out there will too.

  122. dont worry simon i only know half of that song “baby got back” hahah

    one of your stick figures had a george lopez head :O lol

    and Ga in is F’n Gorgeous

  123. Honestly though, and sorry if I have commented a lot on this matter already, us westerners have beauty standards too, some that can’t be meet naturally. And we do know about the size of the eyes or face. True, we might be a bit more flexible and depends on the person, but in general, for example: ask a guy what he likes in a girl and he will say, I like big eyes, juicy lips, straight teeth, small nose, tall , long legs, tiny waist, big boobs or big bum…hence the existence of plastic surgery and eating disorders,bullying wouldn’t exist, hair dyes, dieting, anti-aging creams, etc. I am not saying they’re right, Asians trying to change their natural beauty, but ALL of us are to blame at some point I think, all of us try to meet some silly standard of beauty.

  124. jazzyfish

    ROFLLLLLLLLLLLL….. the cartoons XDD
    Anyways, before i watched this video i realized that I do cover the sides of my face… and I’ve NEVER heard of anyone else doing it (till now). I’m not weird anymore, YAY!! Lol ^^

  125. Anonymous

    I’d also mention the long, high nose thingy (which I thinks looks weird on Asians ex. Park MinYoung, Jeong JunHyeok). Actually thanks to Koreans i got over my long-nose-complex;) Also many young(well, under 40?^^) Koreans hate their natural hair color.Even those who live in Central-Northern Europe(where black hair is really rare and considered beautiful) mostly dye their hair brown(some kids too). Actually I’ve been wondering why brown not blond, red, pink, blue, whatever. Other thing is Korean women shaving their eyebrows and putting some fake eyebrow stickers/drawing them instead. Many Koreans also dislike having imperfect forehead hair line and they keep pulling out these cute, tiny, short hairs. Also here in Europe most of people consider freckles an utterly cute thing that makes your face look young but Koreans really hate it and who can removes it with laser:/ Well I think anyone could list many more jaw-dropping things about Korean beauty standards. The only thing I actually support is light skin color ’cause tanning is unhealthy;) And I drink hectolitres of oksusu tea but my face didn’t go V at all, as square as always;)

    • About the nose thing… yeah, i’ve always hated my nose because it seems so long and big… but my Filipino boyfriend LOVES my nose. I”m like,”But… it’s so big :-/” He’s like,”I know… it’s niiice.” Weird lol. 

    • Blond was a common color that Koreans dyed back in the mid 90′s.  The problem was when a person dyed their hair blond, people would get the impression that the person is… um…. a delinquent? So as time went on, less and less people died their hair blond.

  126. I believe that it’s not only Korea which is like this, but it’s all around Asia.  In response to them keeping white, it’s like what someone said in the previous comment.  You will always find whitening products no matter where you go in Asia, if your Asian, and you enjoy being tanned, then that usually means you’ve been westernized.  Smaller face/V shaped face is also a favored facial shape.  For the Chinese they call it the (GWAH JEE MEEN) sunflower/watermelon seed face, which is the most ideal face for a person to have.  As for the double eye lids… I have no comment, as I don’t really care about how big, or the shape of their eyes are.  Though I highly doubt they want it to look white….. wait… do Caucasians have double eyelids??  It’s a common thing for most Chinese.  Personally I like girls with small eyes, as it makes them look more ….what’s the word….. attractive in a lustful sensation???? But the Chinese dislike small eyes for the same reason, saying girls with those type of eyes usually are the type to steal married men. LOL

    As for alot of people disliking the idea of people getting plastic surgery.  I personally do not care, because I personally feel anything a person does to change how they look is plastic surgery, which includes piercings, tattoos, and in reality the most common around the world…BRACES!!!!!!!!!!

    Though I’m not asking for hate comments, I must add… I love the fact that it is not illegal to discriminate, and the way you look will affect the chances if you get a job or not.  (I don’t want a 50 year old lady serving as my flight attendant like the ones I’ve seen on American Airlines) Though it did suck that because I’m not white, I had problems landing a teaching job.

    • re:” Though I’m not asking for hate comments, I must add… I love the fact that it is not illegal to discriminate, “…ummm, that’s pretty much like saying, “I’m fine with racism, ageism and sexism”. Just pointing out that if you say that outloud, where other people can hear, it’s fair game for you to receive a response.”I don’t want a 50 year old lady serving as my flight attendant like the ones I’ve seen on American Airlines”You might ask yourself why it’s you feel it’s neccessary that your *food server* be sexually attractive to you….because it’s food you’ve paid to be served and nothing else. Suggesting some self-reflection for you.

      • I guess your right, why is it necessary for my *food server* to be sexually attractive?, though I never mentioned at all that they need to be sexually attractive.  Now the question is, “are flight attendants merely food servers, or are they more?  In my perspective, flight attendants not only serve food, and attend to basic needs of what customers need, but in times of danger, they are the ones who are suppose to take care of the customers.  Though of course, I’ve seen 50 ~ 60 year old Asian ladies ripped, and stronger then many men out there, I’ve never seen those type of ladies serving as attendants.  

        Though the flight attendant comment I made does seem rather ill mannered, may I change my example?  Let’s just say, I’m glad I don’t see obese men and women wearing tiny little uniforms doing the so called (un)sexy dance in front of grand opened stores to attract customers . ㅋㅋㅋㅋㅋ

  127. Firstly .. what are double eyelids .. I thought double eyelids were a feature of Vulcans (Spock)…
    Secondly .. Ga-In .. droool .. hoowwllll .. droooool … 
    Thirdly .. wow .. a single set of criteria for both men and women? First time I heard of anything like that
    I mean .. when we were in college, the ultimate form of “Manly Men” were Sean Connery and Pierce Brosnin . .

  128. I never tan.  I burn, plain and Mr. Simple.  Plus, even if I wanted to tan, all I have to do is see ANYONE from Jersey Shore and I instantly am turned off of it.  Thank God, I’m not orange.

  129. I’ve always wondered about that! good video!

  130. Ohh and you forgot about the high noses!!

  131. agree! GA IN is GORGEOUS..mono-lids are beautiful in their own way, I think eyes should be considered pretty because of the gaze/stare than the shape or color, the top models with Asian backgrounds neeever have double eyelids and they’re models for a reason right?

    anyway, I heard Jessica Alba was pretty famous in South Korea, why is that if they don’t are very fond of uber tanned people? this confuses me a lot. [no,not really]

  132. Thanks for the vid, it actually reminded me of the question I always wanted to ask. Since you two are both teachers, do you guys teach your Korean students about accepting other ethnicities or like help break the stereotypes Koreans believe about other ethnicities? Much, love, quinquin.

  133. Karlene Blackburn

    I understand the reasoning behind all of this, but it just seems very sad to me. Korean people in general look beautiful the way they are.

    I do understand why North Americans tan. It is because a long time ago a lot of people subscribed to the notion that being pale = sick. So getting some sun and a little color means being healthy and fit. Yes, you do need sun…not for tanning but for vitamin D it helps fight off depression. That’s why so many folks suffer in the winter and need special artifical light to fight off the “Winter Blues”. But like with anything in society, some folks take it to the max and overdo it and end up looking like an ooompa loompa…even with the fake tan. I’m African-American, I do wear sun screen especially when I played soccer in the summer. I wore the highest SPF that I could find because I would blister with heat rash if I didn’t.

    I still feel uncomfortable seeing double eyelid tape and glue being sold and I’ve been here for a year. I understand the reasoning for it, but deep down I still wish they would know how beautiful they are with out it.

    I do feel saddend when I see beautiful Korean girls on the train with the most messed up skin due to over use of makeup. I always think if they were confident in being natural or not using makeup so much they would have healthy skin. Plus some girls use so much make up that when they do take it off they look completely different. We do that in the US too, but I think Korean girls have it down to an art form especially with the overuse of eye makeup.

    I also feel saddend when Korean women with athletic bodies feel ashamed about their build. Even the ones who play in action roles on TV. In most western countries a woman with an athletic build is seen as healthy, strong, and sexy.Those women should not feel bad because they have a little bit of muscle. Yes, I know there are strong male female roles here, but those women should be made to feel bad, but celebrated. They are beautiful and sexy too ! :) 

    EVERYONE IS BEAUTIFUL!! *^-^*

  134. Karlene Blackburn

    I understand the reasoning behind all of this, but it just seems very sad to me. Korean people in general look beautiful the way they are.

    I do understand why North Americans tan. It is because a long time ago a lot of people subscribed to the notion that being pale = sick. So getting some sun and a little color means being healthy and fit. Yes, you do need sun…not for tanning but for vitamin D it helps fight off depression. That’s why so many folks suffer in the winter and need special artifical light to fight off the “Winter Blues”. But like with anything in society, some folks take it to the max and overdo it and end up looking like an ooompa loompa…even with the fake tan. I’m African-American, I do wear sun screen especially when I played soccer in the summer. I wore the highest SPF that I could find because I would blister with heat rash if I didn’t.

    I still feel uncomfortable seeing double eyelid tape and glue being sold and I’ve been here for a year. I understand the reasoning for it, but deep down I still wish they would know how beautiful they are with out it.

    I do feel saddend when I see beautiful Korean girls on the train with the most messed up skin due to over use of makeup. I always think if they were confident in being natural or not using makeup so much they would have healthy skin. Plus some girls use so much make up that when they do take it off they look completely different. We do that in the US too, but I think Korean girls have it down to an art form especially with the overuse of eye makeup.

    I also feel saddend when Korean women with athletic bodies feel ashamed about their build. Even the ones who play in action roles on TV. In most western countries a woman with an athletic build is seen as healthy, strong, and sexy.Those women should not feel bad because they have a little bit of muscle. Yes, I know there are strong male female roles here, but those women should be made to feel bad, but celebrated. They are beautiful and sexy too ! :) 

    EVERYONE IS BEAUTIFUL!! *^-^*

    • well said, I think everyone is free of having their own beauty standards and they don’t necessarily need to fit in other cultures to be right or wrong (East vs West ideology) but always in a healthy way, both physical and mental.

  135. With regards to the tanning issue, I think that both cultures are wrong. You should neither go out of your way to be tan nor out of your way to be white. Just live your life and whatever color your skin is is what it will be. (It would be nice to actually have an even tan though… I mean really, soccer tans are the worst. your knee is black and then your calves and thighs are blinding white. -__-) As for the small face, they really compare that? I’ve always though people with small heads looked oddly disproportionate… Huge eyes I agree with though. I like big eyes. But not so big that they look unnatural. I can also see the v-line being ideal, but not so much that you can’t have any other face shape to be considered beautiful. And I really have no idea why you would want to get rid of your beautiful monolid… I absolutely love them and almost wish I had one (but I’m white, blond, and blue/green-eyed so that would look really unnatural… >.<) Oh, Korea, wake up and realize that there is no point in conforming! (And that would be the hipster in me speaking. kekeke…)

  136. I LOVE HOW YOUR PUT GAIN AS THE MONOLID BEAUTY REFERENCE HERE. GAIN JJANG!! Thanks Simon for putting her pics here. (p.s I know you like her too =P)

  137. Anonymous

    Thank you for censoring the Jersey Shore reference haha.
    I thought all your points were really valid. I guess all cultures probably have the basic “ideal” like skinny chick, big chest, long hair…..six-packed man….. haha but I def. never noticed a lot of the beauty concepts that you brought up until I went to Korea.

  138. I watched a preview for a documentary about this! Here’s the link: http://vimeo.com/26833191 (The first part is about studying and schooling..just skip a bit to get to the beauty part) It’s really interesting! It’s sad too though, the girls on there are so pretty but they just don’t see it themselves so they want surgery ): I guess it’s the same for girls and women in every country though to an extent. Let me know what you think!

  139. Yoo Jin Kim

    i seen in korea that the news is like on for 8 a clock and 730 i think they should just have like one a day your thoughts…

  140. Yoo Jin Kim

    i seen in korea that the news is like on for 8 a clock and 730 i think they should just have like one a day your thoughts…

  141. I’m caucasian, but I still don’t understand the appeal of tanning. I’d rather stay out of the sun, and not get the wrinkles/sun damage/freckles/skin cancer. SPF is awesome! Haha :)

    But on another note, I do think this view of beauty is rather sad. I wish the majority of Korean girls (and guys too I guess) could realize they don’t have to look a certain way to be beautiful…

  142. wow….so many things lol….i’m asian(chinese…) and i’m already tanned…from all that sports and…sports……I’M OBAMA!!!!! lol
    that spudgy thing never gets old…..love spudgy <3 <3 <3

  143. Michelle Harry

    GaIn! she’s such a beauty! i find her even more sensual n dazzling than that putting 2 bottles by my face is oh so giving me such a v-line shape lady

  144. I don’t do tanning either (I’m Asian), but it’s because I’m scared of having cancer and also because I easily have those black dots on my face, and that would ruin it. It also makes you look older! For the jaw thing, it is very weird…

    • Yeah but I used to know a lot of friends that like tanning because 1) It tends to make you look skinnier and 2) It helps blend in any blemishes you have on your skin ;) I think that could be why a lot of Americans like tanning? I haven’t tanned in like 8 years or so though… I finally embraced my pale self :D

    • In certain way I’m glad Koreans aren’t into the tanning thing, they have the BEST sunblocks out there, and I’m not even worried about getting darker or not, I’m Mexican and my natural skin color is more on the white side than tan but when I do tan I get a  golden color that I like a lot but I am super worried like you about skin cancer, the bad thing is that most sunblocks are very very heavy and block my pores, which make me break-out, so you block the sun but get other skin problems..such a nightmare! until I found the wonders of Korean skin products haha

  145. We’re all different, and should all celebrate those differences :)

  146. I don’t get the tanning thing either. . . I literally can’t stay out in the sunlight with out lotion on anymore because of how pale I have gotten over the years. I’m Hispanic so when I was younger and spent lots of time outside I was naturally dark. . . but now that I’m older and spend most of my time at work or at home asleep…I never see sunlight.  And as a result I have become extremely pale.  Most people think I’m Asian actually. . . b/c of my pale skin and dark hair. . . I guess my skin still has that Hispanic hue to it even though it’s pale. . . I have no idea.  I don’t actually see it myself. XD  

    On the topic of sleeping on one side of your face. . . My mom said it was to keep the back of my head from being flat. . . So I guess in America we do it so our heads aren’t flat….where as in Asian cultures they do it for the ‘v-line’?   That’s interesting to know.  

  147. Korea’s pressure on women (and men, but to a lesser sense) to gain and maintain a sense of “beauty” has always been one of my biggest qualms about the country. Surgery, that you did not mention, is actually quite common among the younger generation. One method of surgery to attain the v-line is jaw shaving–shaving down the jaw of your bone. Appearances and the necessity to maintain appearances is a leftover from the times before Korea rose to economic heights, and hasn’t shaken off due to Korea’s extremely fast development. Fortunately, standards of beauty are changing albeit in hidden places with certain people. 

    Why do people obsess over their looks? It’s not pressure from the outside world, it’s pressure from the people around home. Family members, coworkers, potential lovers–it’s an insane amount of pressure, and people who don’t fit into the ideal are criticized. In some cases, your job can be on the line if you aren’t attractive. I hope this all changes in the near future, among many of Korea’s gaping flaws.

  148. I couldn’t think of any female celebrities with wide chins/square jaws so I was looking it up and found this:  “Women with large chins are more likely to cheat” @ http://www.telegraph.co.uk/health/healthnews/4421983/Women-with-large-chins-are-more-likely-to-cheat.html
     
    I guess that is a pretty good reason to have a preference for small chins. 

  149. I couldn’t think of any female celebrities with wide chins/square jaws so I was looking it up and found this:  “Women with large chins are more likely to cheat” @ http://www.telegraph.co.uk/health/healthnews/4421983/Women-with-large-chins-are-more-likely-to-cheat.html
     
    I guess that is a pretty good reason to have a preference for small chins. 

  150. I couldn’t think of any female celebrities with wide chins/square jaws so I was looking it up and found this:  “Women with large chins are more likely to cheat” @ http://www.telegraph.co.uk/health/healthnews/4421983/Women-with-large-chins-are-more-likely-to-cheat.html
     
    I guess that is a pretty good reason to have a preference for small chins. 

  151. I’m Canadian but of Taiwanese-Filipino ancestry. The double eye lid is I think a common thing in Asia. I know a lot of people who undergo surgery to make their eye bigger. As for the pale skin, it’s not only in Korea but I think the rest of Asia. I lived in Malaysia, Singapore, Philippines, Taiwan and Japan and there is one thing in common. Their supermarkets are full of whitening stuff. Whitening face mask, whitening toner, whitening soap, whitening lotion. And yes, there’s the Gluthatione IV – they inject it and it claims to make you really really pale.  The explanation behind “wanting to be fair” is I guess, more on socio economic status; when you’re fair; this means you don’t do blue collar jobs. Being fair is always associated to being wealthy or belonging to the upper class of society.

    So, in Canada, when it’s summer….we Asians bring out the biggest umbrellas we have (to shade us from the sun) and the strongest whitening products one can afford.

  152. I think Korea has it right when it comes to tanning. Tanning is the worst thing that you could do to your skin, and is potentially dangerous. I think the ideal beauty is simply being healthy. 

  153. My best friend in the whole world is 1/4 Japanese and we always joke about how she has a big head. I think I have a pretty small head though, but it’s funny when I try on a hat and it’s too big and she puts it on and it doesn’t fit. We joke about it, she knows it’s true, and she is absolutely drop dead gorgeous with her big head and huge hair :)

  154. emilyeem

    I remember one time when my Korean friend told me “oohh! you’re eyelids are so cute, I want mine to look like yours.” At first I was a liiitle creeped, but then I remembered how popular double eyelids are in Asia.

  155. Anonymous

    Thanks guys! This TLDR was very helpful! I had no idea that “beautiful” was so specific in Korea (not that its a bad thing). I understand the whole double eyelid thing because i have a lot of asian friends but the whole V-line jaw is a bit odd to me. As for pale skin, FINALLY! A culture that i fit into! (I’m a red-haired, blue-eyed ginger girl with crazy pale skin that normally get me made fun of). Also, Simon you crack me up! “Because i naughty naughty!” *random Mr.Simple dance party!*

  156. Byeonguk Yook

    I think Koreans have an obsession for pale skin. It just seems they go overboard.

  157. Yayy ^^ I have big eyes ( my friends make fun of me because of my eyes ¬¬) double eyelids and v-line …My skin is not that pale neither tan skin ( I don’t like the sun ><) anyways… everybody is beautiful in their own way not matter what .  ^0^

  158. AHAHAHAHAHAHHAHAHA!!! Simon had found another song addiction~LOL, first, “Ayyy Girl”, then “Intoxication”, and now….”Mr. Simple”~Because YOU naughty naughty~ :PAnd it’s interesting when you concluded that those beauty standards could be apply to BOTH men and women~Now I realized that~Another interesting facts, S&M.

  159. and also, you should also mention that a lot of Asians have natural double eyelids. A lot of people think that Asians just get plastic surgeries to have it done if they have double eyelids but some have it naturally. My mother and my sister have natural double eyelids, my father and I don’t. For asians, they also have hooded/ inner eyelid eyes which is similar to the double eyelids but the fold is underneath your eyes (like an opposite fold from the double eyelids). its called 속쌍꺼풀.

    • Agree~

      In my country, MOST people have double eyelids and i never meet anyone who care about who have DEL or not~

      I myself, never really take my DEL as something as significant as how Koreans thought so~

      Then again, it’s all about cultural difference~ :)

  160. “we should mention that these beauty points are what we feel the Korean
    media emphasizes as beauty, and what our Korean friends might mention in
    passing conversation, but this does not represent every Korean.”
    I think you should mention that in your video also.. seems like a very important point since a lot of people on the video now are commenting that they wouldn’t look ideal to Koreans

  161. I think that Ahjumma’s were the visors and coverings so they don’t get wrinkles.

  162. Byeonguk Yook

    Do they any products in Korea that can bleach skin since there seems to be heavy emphasis on pale skin? 

  163. Byeonguk Yook

    Do they any products in Korea that can bleach skin since there seems to be heavy emphasis on pale skin? 

  164. Anonymous

    My friend told me about you guys only a week ago and already I think I’ve seen all your videos. Keep up the good work. It’s funny and informative. All the best!

  165. I have a
    friend from Singapore
    - she sends me many Korean cosmetic sometimes (and CD’s too uhuhu :) I’m always
    grateful to her for this, but most of these cosmetics was for facial
    brightening >.< I live in Poland
    (Europe) so I don't care for whitening xD I
    like to be tanned! I had to explain to her that & she was really surprised,
    she admit that she didn't think about this in 'my way' but 'her way' :)

  166. I’m Cuban/American and i have natural golden tan skin (not every Cuban does, some actually have porcelain white skin) so when i go to the beach, park, or even my backyard for like 5 minutes i get even more tanned, luckily i don’t go out that much so i don’t have that horrible Jersey Shore tan (lol that’s just pushing it, they tan way too often). Anyways, putting on sunblock doesn’t work for my skin it only prevents me from getting burned not tan and i really don’t mind. I love my tanned skin but i think pale skin is also beautiful. I think the real difference is that because North America has a variety of cultures, our standards of what is beautiful is varied as well. What i might find as beautiful some of my friends and/or family might not think the same. Because of the many cultures and what not, we also tend to be a lot more open-minded. We have celebrities of all different types so its hard for us to choose just one ideal among all of them, in fact i have like 9851514 celebrity crushes, including SK Idols. Although Koreans are brilliant they are still culturally ignorant and tend to generalize other cultures, fortunately not all are like that because like you said those are people that are a little bit more understanding of foreign cultures.

  167. Sara Constantin

    I think that these really common ideals of beauty in Korea exist because it’s a mono-ethnic country. The same rules apply (I think) to most of Asia.
    Generally, traits that are rare among certain people will be considered the most “beautiful.” Since most Koreans tend to be shorter, have bigger heads (which is kind of true, not that it matters), be darker (not even dark, just darker than, say, white people), and have single eyelids, so being pale and tall with single eyelids is more unusual and therefore more “beautiful.” The same applies in North America, on a much smaller scale. People with brown eyes don’t get compliments about them: people with blue eyes do. The difference is that here, it’s more about personal preference rather than having one perfect look for nearly the entire nation, like you guys said.
    I don’t know why Asians seem to make a bigger deal of these preformed ideals than people from other countries usually do, but it might come somewhere from the generalization that “all Asians look alike.” So to look different, they’re changing so that they look alike again? I’m not sure about that one. :P

    Anyway, that’s my two cents! I hope that makes some sense. xD

    • What especially confuses us is the high heels and platform shoes usage.  We understand that heels make your legs look nicer, but a lot of our Korean friends say that they want to look taller, which is why we’ll see lots of platform shoes, or insoles (like you saw Super Junior wearing in our Bonus Footage).  

      Why is everybody trying to look taller?  If you’re generally the same height, then who are you trying to be as tall as?  That other girl wearing platform shoes?  If both of you don’t wear them, then you’re the same height!

      We don’t get it… :(

  168. You guys are hilarious! I was a little afraid of the reactions/looks I would get if I taught overseas because I am like ten shades darker than dark.

  169. Ah… that must be why Grandma is always bugging me.  She’s a full blooded Korean so I hear many things about how she thinks I should look.  Lovely grandma…  ^__^” I’m “nice girl size” so says my partner.  I definitely don’t fit a very Asian ideal because I have tan skin and get really dark (because my dad married a Samoan) and have very islander curly hair.  Figure…  Hee.  But my Korean family members?  Not what I look like.

  170. I’m a moderately tan-skinned chinese american and all my Caucasian friends go, “You’re so lucky! You’re tan all year round! We’re so pasty, etc.”

     My relatives/parents always praised my sister’s and brother’s pale skin and pointier chins, and then kinda just went silent when they saw me (i am darker, have a cleft chin and very un-asian curly hair ).

  171. I’m a moderately tan-skinned chinese american and all my Caucasian friends go, “You’re so lucky! You’re tan all year round! We’re so pasty, etc.”

     My relatives/parents always praised my sister’s and brother’s pale skin and pointier chins, and then kinda just went silent when they saw me (i am darker, have a cleft chin and very un-asian curly hair ).

  172. Anonymous

    This idea of paleness being more desirable makes me uncomfortable, regardless of cultural differences. It must be tough dealing with it as a darker-skinned person in S. Korea (or anywhere in Asia, for that matter). The Obama comment was very telling (and depressing). I wonder what kind of effect this avoidance of the sun has on skin cancer and vitamin D deficiency rates though?

  173. Anonymous

    This idea of paleness being more desirable makes me uncomfortable, regardless of cultural differences. It must be tough dealing with it as a darker-skinned person in S. Korea (or anywhere in Asia, for that matter). The Obama comment was very telling (and depressing). I wonder what kind of effect this avoidance of the sun has on skin cancer and vitamin D deficiency rates though?

  174. Anonymous

    This idea of paleness being more desirable makes me uncomfortable, regardless of cultural differences. It must be tough dealing with it as a darker-skinned person in S. Korea (or anywhere in Asia, for that matter). The Obama comment was very telling (and depressing). I wonder what kind of effect this avoidance of the sun has on skin cancer and vitamin D deficiency rates though?

  175. Anonymous

    This idea of paleness being more desirable makes me uncomfortable, regardless of cultural differences. It must be tough dealing with it as a darker-skinned person in S. Korea (or anywhere in Asia, for that matter). The Obama comment was very telling (and depressing). I wonder what kind of effect this avoidance of the sun has on skin cancer and vitamin D deficiency rates though?

  176. I’m Asian and I have the v-line, double eyelid, just not the pale skin~
    Grr, stupid beach trip xD

  177. I’m Asian and I have the v-line, double eyelid, just not the pale skin~
    Grr, stupid beach trip xD

  178. i like this one!!!! also it’s not just a korea thing!! it’s an asian thing!!!!! in china, small face, pale skin, and etc. are considered beautiful!

  179. I quite understand how Asian culture is like this because I’m Asian too. Unfortunately,I have pretty dark skin comparing to my friends and I got teased a lot because of it when I was a child. Now I’m grown up and I don’t really care about it but it would be better if there are less advertisments that keep telling people to be whiter. It’s like they’re brain-washed!   People should just love what they have and be what they are.

  180. i think that the stereotype of koreans being superficial comes from their over-attentiveness (from an american perspective) to facial features/design, and their commitment to do whatever it takes (read: plastic surgery) to get the “ideal” look.

    what i like is how simon and martina can analyze it from a somewhat objective point of view and educate. i’ve seen too many videos bashing either europeans or koreans, and this was clear cut and educational.

    SO IN SHORT, ME GUSTA AND I AGREE. :D

    • Thanks a lot!  We’re always worried about doing videos like this, because we – clearly – can’t get the full picture of what Korea’s like, since we’re not Korean and barely speak the language.  The best that we can do is try to come to conclusions based off what we’ve seen and experienced.  Hopefully those conclusions aren’t too far off!

  181. I have a Korean friend who I stayed with, her and her family in Korea. But she told me that they normally don’t have friends sleep over at their home like that. I was wondering why they didn’t have sleep overs with their friends like Americans do. What do really good BFF’s do together in Korea to show how good of friends they are? And such.

  182. I have a Korean friend who I stayed with, her and her family in Korea. But she told me that they normally don’t have friends sleep over at their home like that. I was wondering why they didn’t have sleep overs with their friends like Americans do. What do really good BFF’s do together in Korea to show how good of friends they are? And such.

  183. I have a Korean friend who I stayed with, her and her family in Korea. But she told me that they normally don’t have friends sleep over at their home like that. I was wondering why they didn’t have sleep overs with their friends like Americans do. What do really good BFF’s do together in Korea to show how good of friends they are? And such.

  184. I have a Korean friend who I stayed with, her and her family in Korea. But she told me that they normally don’t have friends sleep over at their home like that. I was wondering why they didn’t have sleep overs with their friends like Americans do. What do really good BFF’s do together in Korea to show how good of friends they are? And such.

  185. I have a Korean friend who I stayed with, her and her family in Korea. But she told me that they normally don’t have friends sleep over at their home like that. I was wondering why they didn’t have sleep overs with their friends like Americans do. What do really good BFF’s do together in Korea to show how good of friends they are? And such.

  186. I have a Korean friend who I stayed with, her and her family in Korea. But she told me that they normally don’t have friends sleep over at their home like that. I was wondering why they didn’t have sleep overs with their friends like Americans do. What do really good BFF’s do together in Korea to show how good of friends they are? And such.

  187. I have a Korean friend who I stayed with, her and her family in Korea. But she told me that they normally don’t have friends sleep over at their home like that. I was wondering why they didn’t have sleep overs with their friends like Americans do. What do really good BFF’s do together in Korea to show how good of friends they are? And such.

  188. I have a Korean friend who I stayed with, her and her family in Korea. But she told me that they normally don’t have friends sleep over at their home like that. I was wondering why they didn’t have sleep overs with their friends like Americans do. What do really good BFF’s do together in Korea to show how good of friends they are? And such.

    • Korean houses are very small. there are usually no guest rooms and most people live in an apartment. When family members come over, usually they have to sleep on the floor either in the living room or in one of the kid’s rooms, which would not be comfortable at all in western standards. When you go over, most of the times your friends and you can share the bed…or one of you can sleep on the floor.. there are more things to do outside, and in the house you tend to have less privacy with the really small living space.

      • Yeah, I think this might be the right answer here.  It also might do with the fact that Korean people supposedly also don’t have a lot of parties in the home: birthday parties, dinner parties, movie nights, etc.  Social events are usually just done outside of the house.

  189. Hello Simon and Martina! If you could please watch and support this video on your site:

    http://koreanhighschool.com/

    It’s a documentary being filmed by a young American girl in South Korea about the pressures on Koreans to be physically perfect. Koreans
    are very hardworking people who strive for excellence but there’s also a
    lot of pressure in their society to look beautiful and to be perfect in
    school. This is why there’s a high rate of suicide among students and a
    high rate of plastic surgeries done even amongst the youth.

    • Wow this is what I wanted to do before!!!! Congrats to the girl who is creating the doc!!! :) 

    • Definitely donating to this cause! I definitely think that there’s a very high pressure in a good few Asian countries (such as Korea, Japan, China, Taiwan etc) to be the perfect studious student, and pressure from their surrounding peers to be beautiful. Even my Japanese mom tells me that I (a guy) am lucky for having double eyelids; heck even I feel like I’m striving towards these unattainable standards. There’s a lot of pressure to be attractive in no matter what country you live in, but I think it’s quite prevalent in Korea, and it’s hard to know whether to admire it or feel pitied by it.

  190. Wow. I think Koreans look awesome the way they look naturally. They don’t have to look like Westerners Or Europeans. I’m Spaniard/ Mexican and I look more European but I don’t think that Europeans have more beauty than Koreans. They are both equally beautiful and I hope Korea stops with this ideal look. ^___^

  191. I agree, and Gain is frickin gorgeous. I have korean friends with mono lids, and i think mono lids look really elegant and graceful, but they always disagree and say I’m lucky because i have double eye lids and “big eyes” because I’m only half asian. 

  192. I agree, and Gain is frickin gorgeous. I have korean friends with mono lids, and i think mono lids look really elegant and graceful, but they always disagree and say I’m lucky because i have double eye lids and “big eyes” because I’m only half asian. 

  193. Hodto Tu

    LOL…..That´s OBAMA.
    WTF? Chin roller? You´re just kidding, right? (it reminds me like Jim Carrey in a movie called
    Me,Myself & Irene wants to have a big chin)

    Really strange, “white” people like tanning and making their skin “brown”, Korean don´t like tanning and would like to make their skin “white”….weird, weird, definitely weird.

    Actually, when I´m watching K-Dramas or K-POP videos I don´t pay attention to the size of faces or double eyelids at all…you just like the person or you don´t.

  194. Hodto Tu

    LOL…..That´s OBAMA.
    WTF? Chin roller? You´re just kidding, right? (it reminds me like Jim Carrey in a movie called
    Me,Myself & Irene wants to have a big chin)

    Really strange, “white” people like tanning and making their skin “brown”, Korean don´t like tanning and would like to make their skin “white”….weird, weird, definitely weird.

    Actually, when I´m watching K-Dramas or K-POP videos I don´t pay attention to the size of faces or double eyelids at all…you just like the person or you don´t.

  195. Hodto Tu

    LOL…..That´s OBAMA.
    WTF? Chin roller? You´re just kidding, right? (it reminds me like Jim Carrey in a movie called
    Me,Myself & Irene wants to have a big chin)

    Really strange, “white” people like tanning and making their skin “brown”, Korean don´t like tanning and would like to make their skin “white”….weird, weird, definitely weird.

    Actually, when I´m watching K-Dramas or K-POP videos I don´t pay attention to the size of faces or double eyelids at all…you just like the person or you don´t.

  196. I’m pretty much a fob in Australia and the only thing from the list that I care is the double eyelids and that’s because it’s so hard to put make-up with mono eyelids.

  197. 1. Any guy that has one type is an idiot. The four girls in miss A are all distinctly different, yet each stunning in their own unique way.

    All of us goths grow up to be vampires you know.

  198. ah la la…no matter how hard I try, I’m simply NOT able to tell if someone has a mono or double eyelid LOL! nooo comment

  199. “With that idea, the vast amount of time I spend sleeping on one side
    of my face should have horribly distorted my face by now.”
    -on that note, i even heard that Korean parents make their babies sleep on one side of their face(well of course alternate sides) to probably achieve that “v-line jaw”?(while their bones are still growing)

    • don’t know where you heard that from, but Koreans adore children and would not do anything do compromise even a slight bit of their health. I’ve never seen Korean adults obsess over their baby’s looks and do something do change it.

  200. I’m Chinese, and my mom always told me to sleep on one side of my face or the other (ie not facing the ceiling), I’m guessing so that I could get more of a v-line shaped face. Was this just my mom or do other asian moms tell their children this too?? XD

  201. I didn’t even notice the “V-shape” face in the image because I was too excited to see that it’s an ad for a tea I drank a lot during my visit. xD

    I totally started dancing when you guys did during “Baby Got Back.” However… *puts on a shutter-shade monocle* The line after “sprung” is “wanna pull out tough ’cause you noticed that butt was stuffed.”

    What do you guys think is a desired hairstyle/hair type for Koreans? I mean, yes, we see a lot of straight, jet black or dark brown hair, but a lot of women complimented and touched my spiraly curls saying how they loved/wanted the style.

  202. Yay for paleness!!! Tan just equals tacky. I try so hard to be pale in Florida, could use some of those Korean skin products. SPF 15 just doesn’t cut it here. 

  203. I guess then its really difficult to be found pretty or beautiful in SK if youre dark colored by nature.

  204. Mackenzie Starr

    I don’t know if you guys have seen this, but it some-what relates to the topic. http://www.mediadump.com/hosted-id167-average-faces-from-around-the-world.html
    There’s no Canada though :c

  205. Anonymous

    Now, I understand why my relatives had that reaction. I live in Canada (but I’m Southeast Asian); I go out under the sun all the time not really concerning myself with that fact that I will get a tan. When I went back to Asia for a visit, the first thing my relatives said was “oh! you’re so dark” and then they gave me a year supply of gluthatione (it’s a capsule asians take to make their skin lighter – actually, that’s the side effect of the meds). So, while I was there, I was going out in the sun WITHOUT an umbrella and they would give me funny looks, it’s like I’ve committed a crime. I still took the glutha though to give them peace of mind so I became really really pale like zombie pale so when I got back to Nova Scotia, the first thing I did was go to the beach. :P.

  206. Muggledore

    gosh! its very difficult to be considered beautiful in Korea..  
    no wonder plastic surgery is a booming industry in that country =(

  207. I can totally get the tanning thing, ’cause I really don’t understand pressing in the sun for hours just to be brown and with the consequence of getting more wrinkles…

    Me and Martina can start a vampire club, I always stay away from the sun to avoid burning!! ^______~

  208. I can totally get the tanning thing, ’cause I really don’t understand pressing in the sun for hours just to be brown and with the consequence of getting more wrinkles…

    Me and Martina can start a vampire club, I always stay away from the sun to avoid burning!! ^______~

  209. Anonymous

    I have double eyelids and I didn’t even know what double eyelids were until i got into kpop.

  210. Anonymous

    I have double eyelids and I didn’t even know what double eyelids were until i got into kpop.

  211. rutha80

    what about Hyori she’s pretty tan and she was considered Korea’s beauty queen? so yeah i’m a little confused

  212. rutha80

    what about Hyori she’s pretty tan and she was considered Korea’s beauty queen? so yeah i’m a little confused

    • cassandra

      Lee Hyori was not really tan when she debuted as a member of Fin K.L. And FYI she became the sexy queen of Korea not because of her skin color but because of her music and Korean people loves her personality and her attitude. 

      • rutha80

        what i meant was like lets say girls put her as her role model and wanted to be like her so that kinda comes across like since i want to be like her im going to forget about being pale skinned and get a somewhat tan look like Hyori you know what i mean?

  213. Anonymous

    It still surprises me about the “eyelid surgery”.I think that distinct eyelid is pretty and EXOTIC!

  214. Anonymous

    It still surprises me about the “eyelid surgery”.I think that distinct eyelid is pretty and EXOTIC!

  215. Anonymous

    It still surprises me about the “eyelid surgery”.I think that distinct eyelid is pretty and EXOTIC!

  216. Anonymous

    It still surprises me about the “eyelid surgery”.I think that distinct eyelid is pretty and EXOTIC!

  217. Anonymous

    It still surprises me about the “eyelid surgery”.I think that distinct eyelid is pretty and EXOTIC!

  218. Anonymous

    It still surprises me about the “eyelid surgery”.I think that distinct eyelid is pretty and EXOTIC!

  219. Anonymous

    It still surprises me about the “eyelid surgery”.I think that distinct eyelid is pretty and EXOTIC!

  220. Anonymous

    It still surprises me about the “eyelid surgery”.I think that distinct eyelid is pretty and EXOTIC!

  221. Anonymous

    It still surprises me about the “eyelid surgery”.I think that distinct eyelid is pretty and EXOTIC!

  222. Anonymous

    It still surprises me about the “eyelid surgery”.I think that distinct eyelid is pretty and EXOTIC!

  223. Anonymous

    It still surprises me about the “eyelid surgery”.I think that distinct eyelid is pretty and EXOTIC!

    • Anonymous

      I think it’s all over Asia, not just in Korea. My Filipino friend just had her eyelids done. I’m of Chinese – Filipino ancestry and I have small eyes and my mom would always tell me to have that double eyelid surgery done because of some health benefits (???). I’ve never done it. I’m happy with my eyes.

  224. And I think I’ve just found the answer to why my (Korean) boyfriend wears long sleeves and long pants in the summer and likes his skin so pale, hah. The whole concept of having one ideal look is kinda weird to me, but I suppose, in a less multicultural place like Korea it makes sense.

  225. And I think I’ve just found the answer to why my (Korean) boyfriend wears long sleeves and long pants in the summer and likes his skin so pale, hah. The whole concept of having one ideal look is kinda weird to me, but I suppose, in a less multicultural place like Korea it makes sense.

  226. ….Why?….You said tanning and the first person that came into my mind was HyunAh……Isn’t she still considered beautiful with her tan? The people in that picture just look ridiculous…Jersey Shore cast? Thats not tanning that’s burning your skin.

  227. ….Why?….You said tanning and the first person that came into my mind was HyunAh……Isn’t she still considered beautiful with her tan? The people in that picture just look ridiculous…Jersey Shore cast? Thats not tanning that’s burning your skin.

  228. Anonymous

    well, every culture has their own beauty
    in arab countries they like light skinned girls that are fuller, not too skinny. 
    also in india and pakistan they like lighter skinned girls. 
    it seems to be a common trait across Asia   

    haha, Obama. that kid would probably get his ass kicked for sho.

  229. Anonymous

    well, every culture has their own beauty
    in arab countries they like light skinned girls that are fuller, not too skinny. 
    also in india and pakistan they like lighter skinned girls. 
    it seems to be a common trait across Asia   

    haha, Obama. that kid would probably get his ass kicked for sho.

  230. Tabberz

    I’m uber pale, have double eyelids and I guess my jaw is v-shaped…
    I’ve never really considered these accomplishments until now :D

  231. Tabberz

    I’m uber pale, have double eyelids and I guess my jaw is v-shaped…
    I’ve never really considered these accomplishments until now :D

  232. Ti_Metzger

    Ubersexual 8DD
    I just can’t get that word out of my mind XD It left an everlasting impression XD

  233. Ti_Metzger

    Ubersexual 8DD
    I just can’t get that word out of my mind XD It left an everlasting impression XD

  234. Wow.. That’s scary! The PS ads only can influence people mind! Never knew pale skin, double eyelids and v jawline such important to them. 

  235. I knew it that Martina was a vampire!!! kkkkkkkkk

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